Amazing 1960s “Storybook Ranch” time capsule house — 42 photos

Mid-century-house-exteriorTour-a-Time-CapsulePam and I are over the moon about our latest time capsule house — a 1960 time capsule Storybook Ranch house in Dedham, Mass. — thanks to reader Jason on our Facebook Page for this awesome tip! Yes, we call this style “Storybook Ranch” or “Cinderella Ranch” — we adore them. But what’s extra special about this one is that it’s on the East Coast, which we think is pretty rare; we tend to think Cindy’s were mostly a west coast phenom, although Pam spotted this one in Pittsfield, Mass.  Back to today’s time capsule, just by looking at the front of the house, you can guess that the inside is also going to be something special. And yes, it does not disappoint — let’s step inside and take the tour — 42 photos in all!

hidden-mid-century-house-landscapingThe rounded decorative shrubs mimic the round stones that make up the edge of the property and act as friendly guardians over this lovely house.

mid-century-house-with-zeroscapingAfter moving past the wall of greenery, it is as if we are transported into a magical mid century land. Look at the cheery aqua awnings and shutters complete with decorative cut outs of horse drawn carriages that dress up the neutral stone facade.


From the listing:

Come see this 8 Room/2 bath custom Ranch where Mad Men meets Greenlodge! Inlaid slate and marble floors with radiant heat. Vermont Quartz fireplace and accent walls in living and family rooms. Stained glass windows, beamed ceilings in huge great room. Oversize lot designed for entertaining. Updated windows, 3 zone heat and 200 amp electric 1 car garage. New roof.

  • Price: $349,900
  • Year built: 1960
  • Square feet: 2,354
  • Bedrooms: 3
  • Bathrooms: 2

I should note that I spoke with the listing agent — Diane Capodilupo from ReMax Real Estate – who told us that this house received a tremendous response, and that there is already a buyer lined up. Thanks, Diane, for giving us permission to add these delicious photos to our archive of time capsule houses.

Mid-century-stone-porch-with-decorative-cement-blockA gorgeous front porch — stone wall, decorative concrete block, colorful hanging light, charming entry door with rounded windows and stained glass side panel. It appears that the floor of the front porch is random pattern slate. We also want the cast iron bench, please!

Mid-century-retro-stone-alcove-wallThe random slate floor continues to the entryway and through the house. We wonder whether beautiful stone wall with niche and built-in ledges was designed to hold religious items. Remember this time capsule (also a romantic revival “storybook” style) –  that’s what its niches were for.

Mid-century-living-room-with-slate-floor-and-stone-wallsThere is so much texture, natural materials and interest in the living room — the generous size and high ceilings give it a very grand feeling. Is that wood wall… pieced together in squares? It look like it! Pam interjects here: I love lOvE LOVE this house!!!!

mid-century-retro-living-room-and-entry-wayAnother great aspect of this room’s design — that fabulous picture window — framed with smaller rectangles to make an interesting geometric pattern that repeats the shapes of the stone and slate throughout the room.

retro-mid-century-living-room-stone-wallmid-century-retro-living-room-stone-wall-and-picture-windowmid-century-stone-wall-vaulted-ceiling-wall-muralPam noticed the gorgeous monochromatic landscape wall mural in the dining room right away.

mid-century-dining-room-with-wall-muralYou can still get authentic wallpaper murals like this — very old skool designs — from Thibaut today. One of the Thibaut designs — might be this one. What do you think?

mid-century-marble-floor-dining-roommid-century-marble-floored-dining-roomThere are so many wonderful details in this house — such as the scalloped trim over the doorways. In the dining room, it is marble to match the floors and other trim.

mid-century-kitchen-with-slate-floorHowever, on the kitchen side — the trim matches the wooden cabinets. Do I spy a vintage built in microwave?

Mid-century-kitchen-vintage-chrome-microwaveOther details in this terrific vintage kitchen — yellow laminate counter tops, avocado green sink, scalloped open shelving, a pass through and more of the random slate flooring that meanders through the house.


Yes, you can still get random color slate today, too.

mid-century-retro-wood-walls-and-random-slate-floorThe skylight in this den is amazing — large enough to let in oodles of natural light and even framed in the same wood paneling that is on the walls in the room.

built-in-wood-and-marble-desk-mid-centuryThe built in desk and adjacent laundry room.

Mid-century-midieval-room-vaulted-ceilingsOkay, so now here’s the really good part: A gothic, story book sitting room. Assuming the carpet is not smelly, would you keep it? Pam says she would.

madonna inn

See our two stories on the bedrooms at the Madonna Inn.

Reader Amanda over on our Facebook page reminded us that these rooms look like some of the bedrooms at the Madonna Inn. Yes! We meant to add that. We have to stories, get your eyeballs ready:

Mid-century-midieval-roomMid-century-midieval-room-with-wall-mount-fireplaceEven the built in cabinet and doorways are dog eared. The wall mounted fireplace — complete with a crest of armor — finishes off the room nicely. This is one stylin’ house!

grey-wood-panelled-walls-shag-carpet-retroThe window seat in this room is such a great detail — it allows for all the built in storage space on either side and below — as well as what must be a wonderful place to keep house plants or get a view of the landscaping outside.

grey-paneling-in-mid-century-houseLove the scallop trim.

black-and-green-marble-mid-century-bathroomHere is another bathroom — made up of the same greenish marble and slate flooring that is found in other parts of the house. The angled vanity maximizes every bit of space.

mid-century-bedroom-with-intercomMetallic wallpaper? We think so — it is hard to get metallics to photograph. Also, we spy an intercom system box on the wall.

mid-century-master-bedroom-with-mini-wall-muralHere in the master bedroom — there is another wall paper mural. The bed looks lovely, wish we could see more of the headboard.

mid-century-master-bedroomMore metallic wallpaper in the attached master bathroom?

mid-century-pink-and-black-bathroom-retroLove it! Go big, or go home.

mid-century-retro-black-and-pink-bathroomNotice how the small sink vanity is covered in laminate.

mid-century-retro-master-bath-laminate-vanityThere is also a second sink for the lady of the house and her Stuff.

retro-bedroommid-century-ranch-house-exteriorOutside in the back of the house, the same carefully planned landscaping is present.

Mid-century-house-back-yardLandscaping-mid-century-patioCharming curved walkways and patios fill the space and provide places to stop, relax and take in the garden.


The barbecue is fantastic.

mid-century-house-landscaping-formalmid-century-shed-that-matches-houseWhat I assume is a potting shed seems built-in to the hedge and is even sided and painted to match the main house.

mid-century-yard-with-wellEvery self-respecting Storybook Ranch needs a wishing well.

outdoor-bbq-mid-century-retroretro-backyard-landscapingretro-patio-with-shed-and-gateWhat a fabulous mid century time capsule house — every square inch of the inside and outside have been thoughtfully designed and appear to have been impeccably maintained. Let’s hope the new owners appreciate the charming mid century character and attention to detail that is very much alive and well in this gem of a time capsule house.

Special thanks to photographer Demetri Papoulidis from Demetri Productions, LLC for allowing us to use his beautiful photos of this property.

Want to see more stories about Storybook Ranch houses:

To see the photos from this house tour twice as large, view our slide show below.

Tips to view slide show: Click on first image… it will enlarge and you can also read my captions… move forward or back via arrows below the photo… you can start or stop at any image:

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  1. says

    I LOVE the 1962 part.The newer part (early 70′s?), not so much. I am guessing that is when the kitchen was updated, too. The yard is amazing. I hope whoever the buyer is appreciates what they have!

    • Rick S says

      I think Sherree is right about a possible update to the kitchen mid to late 70′s. The cabinets have that 70′s colonial vibe and the Amerock Carriage House hardware is easy to date. My house c1978 has the switchplate and outlet covers and cabinet hardware in this pattern. I feel the homeowners may have made some updates over the years but were very careful to stay true to the house and use the best materials in the process.


  2. Chris says

    Wow! Sooo, many details for the eye to take in!! So many textures, patterns . . never a dull moment yet, it all flows together! Love the detailing of the paneling, the window seats and trim work; really gives it character. The carpet speaks for itself. I would keep it too!

  3. RetroGal says

    Love it! This is one where I wish we new the back story of the house… who lived there, what they did for a living, what items/furniture they had where. Wouldn’t you just love to see some photos from a cocktail party thrown at this house?!

  4. Rick says

    In Oklahoma City, they are referred to as Hansel and Gretels. My neighborhood is full of them. All built in the early 60′s.

  5. Rick says

    Looks like one of the first microwaves; an Amana Radarange. Perry Mason’s secretary Della Street (real name escapes me) did commercials for Amana. The house/landscaping is too busy for me, but do like the picture window, green marble, mural, to name a few, but that’d be a tough DIY yard to keep maintained.

  6. Mary Beth says

    I would treat the glorious shag like the vintage textiles they are – off to the rug restorer who will give it a good bath – then have the best part bound to make a coffee table rug. Since they have radiant heat – the under pad is probably shot, so bring on the slate.
    Our Campinelli development here in eastern MA has a slab ranch model called ‘woodlands’ replete with the wavy shingles, diamond mullions on the windows and a ski slope roofline to the ground – as kids we called it the chalet house – there were alot of gnomes and flamingoes in the landscapes back in the 60′s!

    • Regreta says

      I had that carpet in orange and yellow shag in my basement, which flooded badly while we were under contract. It stank and and the backing was rotten and crumbling. We had great (but clashing) red and gray lino underneath, but a contractor destroyed that, too. I still have nightmares about my decision to yank it. And wish I would have at least thought to try and save some for a rug. Sigh.

      Out neighborhood was an airport until the land was sold to developers in 1959. The airport manager lived in our house. Our basement is also outfitted with a professional projection booth, a large movie screen and in-wall speakers. We’ve determined that there’s a possibility they showed stag films there. It is said that such content more safely traveled the friendly skies via small planes, than the roadways, which were policed for smut trafficking.

      Built in 1952, our ranch has a similar yard which spans an acre in Denver, but was way overgrown and parched when we got it. It has been a joy to recover the shapes and tenacious plantings that adorned the original landscape. And these photos will serve as more inspiration in Spring. Thanks!

  7. Tut says

    Good gravy Marie, that red-carpeted room is the bee’s knees. How wonderfully tacky and serious at the same time. I want that carpet in my house.

  8. KK says

    I love the design of the house but not so crazy about the “dark” interior. A little depressing for my taste……I think it could be considered “60′s goth”…I just made that up:):)…I really enjoy viewing all time capsule homes:)….Kim

  9. Randerson says

    Whoa!! Looks like Liberace could have lived there! I can just visualize that white piano complete with candelabra in there somewhere!

  10. gsciencechick says

    Really cool details! Love the gothic sunroom (now there’s an oxymoron!) , the slate floors, and the exterior landscaping.

  11. Barb in Ct says

    I saw an INCREDIBLE orange version of that fabulous fireplace (in the sitting room) in our local ReStore. Man, now I wish i’d bought it!

  12. René Mowry says

    So interesting! But I have to admit that if I was walking through this house, I’d be groaning. Totally not my taste although I do appreciate the imagination put into it.

  13. joan says

    Hi Pam;
    Thanks for showcasing this beautiful house. I wouldn’t change a thing. I think the picture #24 of the sitting area would really have been used as a sort of in house Tavern/Bar. I can imagine many little sitting areas and even a booth under that big window/seat. I think the carpet is red to match the back of the built in bar. My parents had a built in bar complete with a small dance floor, mural and sitting area in Ontario. In NS they had a moveable padded bar in the rec room. There was probably a dance party once a month. Those were the good old days. Thanks for bringing back fond memories.

  14. says

    Wouldn’t it be cool if we were able to read more about the history of the house. Things like who designed it, how they managed to keep it in it’s original state for all of those years..

  15. stephanie leis says

    I am interested in the wall mural Does anyone have any information on it? I am looking for something similar and am out of ideas of where to look or what else to loook at. Name? Pattern? Artist? Cataloge? 1960? 1970?

  16. avery says

    My husband and I were lucky to see this house when we started looking for mid century styles in our area. It was a fantastic house but not practical for us long term :-/ it only had the one family that owned it. The original owner had been a stone mason and completed all of the stone work himself! The entire house had been lovingly maintained and cared for. I hope the owners love it just as much!

    • Barb S. says

      Avery, it must have been gorgeous in person. Thank you for pointing out the original owner was a stone mason. I wondered if anyone noticed the star in the slate in front of the fireplace, that must have been his personal touch. And I have never seen so many hard surfaces in a house! I LOVE IT!!

  17. John says

    This is probably my favorite time capsule house, simply for the 2 gothic rooms. If I could, (and the new owners didn’t want them), I would dismantle these two rooms and bring everything down to Florida, red carpet and all, and figure out how to build it in my house, put an attachment… something. Absolutely love it!

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